Raipur comes with a rich heritage and cultural history which has seen many rulers as the power behind it; thus influencing its journey. A growing industrial powerhouse, this Chhattisgarh capital is primarily a business hub but there are many things to do and places to see in Raipur. The major tourist attractions in Raipur include museums, natural parks, lakes and places of religious importance.
Places to visit in Raipur:
1. Mahant Ghasidas Memorial Museum, Raipur
Named after Raja Mahant Ghasidas of Rajnandgaon, this museum is a must-visit for history enthusiasts and those interested in archaeology. One of the ten oldest museums in India, it takes one through a rich collection of ancient coins, weapons, sculptures, inscriptions, carvings, and items used by regional tribes such as Bastar. Across its many galleries, this museum also preserves artifacts from the Stone Age along with stone carved idols, musical instruments and items exhibiting the Chhattisgarh lifestyle. There is also a beautiful library within the two-storied complex which houses priceless books and records.
- Timing: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm (Closed on Mondays)
2. Urja Park, Raipur
A one-of-its-kind energy park in Raipur, Urja Park is a great option when you are travelling with children. Located close to the city center, the park is spread over acres of green and lush land which is perfect for a picnic. It houses a lake for boating, some science exhibits and a musical fountain. There are a few food joints within the park serving basic snacks to curb your hunger pangs. The park is very well-maintained and is absolutely clean, so ensure you don’t litter the area.
- Timing: 10:00 am to 7:00 pm
3. Vivekananda Sarovar, Raipur
Vivekananda Sarovar is a favorite among locals and is one of the most recommended places to visit in Raipur. If you are looking to spend a few hours in peace and quiet while enjoying the laidback pace of the city, head here without another thought. It is said that Swami Vivekananda stayed close to the lake and spent a lot of time meditating on its banks. His statue was built on the lake as a tribute a few years back and since has been one of Raipur’s most visited spots. You can take a picnic basket here and enjoy the day beneath the splendid statue or go for boating in the sarovar.
- Timing: 6:00 am to 9:00 am, 3:00 pm to 8:00 pm
4. Naya Raipur Central Park, Raipur
Located in New Raipur, this beautiful park is an effort towards making Raipur a tourist-friendly city. The park is spread over a huge area and is a combination of futuristic, modern architecture and green, lush spaces. With a multi-activity area for children, an artificial lake, jogging path, amphitheater and a yoga center, an afternoon here is the perfect way to spend time alone or with family. There is a café, and a few shops serving food at the park but you can take your own picnic basket as well.
- Timing: 5:30 am to 11:00 pm
5. Nandan Van Zoo, Raipur
The Nandan Van Zoo is a recent addition to the city of Raipur and it’s a great experience. Offering safaris on small buses, the zoo is home to a variety of animals including bears, deer, tigers and crocodiles. At present, the zoo offers four types of safaris including the Tiger Safari, Herbivore Safari, Lion Safari and Bear Safari. After the safari, you can also go for a short boating session. It is considered to be one of the largest planted jungles in the country and is gradually becoming a popular attraction in Raipur.
- Timing: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (Closed on Mondays)
6. Doodhadhari Monastery and Temple, Raipur
The beautiful Doodhadhari Monastery and Temple is located along the ancient Maharajbandh River. The temple was built during the 17th century and is dedicated to Lord Rama. It houses a number of stunning murals which you can admire while exploring the complex and the river it overlooks. The temple shares its space with a monastery dedicated to Swami Balbhadra Das, who only survived on milk and no grains. This is also how the monastery gets its name and popularity.
- Timing: 6:00 am to 9:00 pm
7. Mahamaya Temple, Raipur
An 11th century shrine in Raipur, the Mahamaya Temple is located in the old fort area on Kharoon river bank. The shrine is dedicated to Goddess Durga and is thus visited by a large number of devotees at the time of Navratri and Durga Puja. Idols of Mahakali, Bhadrakali, Lord Shiva, Lord Hanuman, Lord Vishnu and Lord Hanuman are also installed within the temple complex. Attending the daily puja at this shrine can be a serene experience for the religious.
8. Kevalya Dham Jain Temple, Raipur
Kevalya Dham Jain Temple is one of the most revered religious places to visit in Raipur. Located on the outskirts of the city, this temple is completely built in marble and is an absolute architectural beauty. Besides admiring the beauty and serenity of the place, you can pay your respects at the holy house of Jainism. After seeking blessings at the altar, you can even spend some time in the beautiful gardens surrounding the temple.
- Distance from Raipur: 12 km
9. Ghatarani Waterfall, Raipur
Trekking to the Ghatarani Waterfall through thick dense forests is truly an adventurer’s delight. Locals in Raipur suggest that the best time to visit these falls is from September to December when the monsoon has contributed to its cascading waters. The revered Jatmai Temple which draws a number of pilgrims is also located here and is a must-visit! You can carry your own picnic basket to the waterfall, even though there are a few shops here which sell everything from juices and fruit chat to Maggi noodles.
- Distance from Raipur: 75 km